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Will Oldham Real Talks With R. Kelly About His New Musical Maturity

Will Oldham Real Talks With R. Kelly About His New Musical Maturity (photo)

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Folk oldschooler, Will Oldham, aka Bonnie Prince Billy, loves R.Kelly. Oldham sat down with the R&B mogul/comedic genius and now time traveler in NY recently for Interview Magazine, and the two got down for some real talk about where Kelly’s come from and where he’s going next — back to the future.

Kelly just released his tenth studio album this past December, “Love Letter” with a vintage soul sound, a departure from his previous bump and grind, contemporary R&B and ridiculous hip hopera cuts. Kelly told Oldham it all started with his love for Sam Cooke and show he put on, impersonating Cooke for a private audience with a full orchestra backing him. Kelly explains:

It was very classy. People loved it. I mean, they got with every song. I was shocked. We had a ball. But I think I was bitten that night, like Peter Parker being bit by the spider. I had this feeling that we really tapped in spiritually to that time. We did go back in time that night. And when I came back to the present, if you will, I’d brought back some goodies, because when I went in the studio — I was working on the Zodiac album, which was all, like, the bump ‘n’ grinds — I couldn’t work on it because I was so overwhelmed and overpowered and pretty much musically abducted by this other period. So I switched and started working on ‘Love Letter,’ and the next thing you know, ‘When a Woman Loves’ [a single on ‘Love Letter’] came out and I was like, ‘What?’ I was like, ‘Wow!’ You know, my music comes to me like that. It talks to me.

When Oldham asked if he’d be visiting another era next, Kelly said he’d probably hit up 1971 and bring some “Shaft” back with him. Then Kelly visited the 80’s to explain how he felt about his gift. “When I was a kid I used to watch, like, ‘Back to the Future,’ where the man would call ‘Marty!’ and they would jump in the little car and go back to the future. And I always said, ‘Man, that’s how I want to be able to travel with my gift.’ So it’s funny that I just sit here now, and I feel like I can get in my musical time machine and just travel anywhere I want.”

Here’s R.Kelly, soul man (looking a bit like young Stevie Wonder) belting out “When A Woman Loves.”


Final Countdown

The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at


Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.


Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…